Château Coufran: Vineyards

Château Coufran sits at the northern end of the Haut-Médoc appellation, in a thin strip of vineyard beyond St Estèphe and to the north of St Seurin de Cadourne. It has a rather exposed position, on a relatively thin phalanx of vineyards that sits atop a gravel croupe, stretching out from St Seurin de Cadourne in a north-north-easterly direction, terminating at a little hamlet named La Marechale, right on the edge of the Gironde. Thus to the east there is a little marshland and the water of the estuary, and much the same to the north, while to the west is marshland criss-crossed by a complex network of drainage channels (like that at the foot of the vines, pictured below). Just to the south is Château Verdignan, then St Seurin de Cadourne and a number of other interesting domaines, not least Château Sociando-Mallet and Château Charmail.

Château Coufran

This is a large estate, now with 76 hectares of vines, more than double the area described back in 1922. The soils here are a dry, sandy gravel, not that unusual for the left bank so close to the Gironde, but this does raise the question why the Miailhe family elected to replant predominantly with Merlot, a variety which now accounts for 85% of the vineyard, the remaining 15% Cabernet Sauvignon.

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